More Brickyard 400 Qualifying Quotes
1 August 1997
NASCAR Winston Cup Series Busch Pole Qualifying Brickyard 400 Indianapolis Motor Speedway July 31, 1997 INDIANAPOLIS, IN - RICK MAST (#75 Remington Arms Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 17th - "I know all the drivers will be complaining that the track's a lot slicker than it is. The car was a little bit loose in qualifying as hot as it got." JEFF GORDON (#24 DuPont Automotive Refinishes Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 24th - "I'm trying not to go hoarse. I've been talking a lot this week. It wasn't quite what we were looking for. Our worse case scenario during qualifying was whether or not it got tight off. And it got tight off. It looks like the track has caught a lot of guys off guard and it caught us off guard. We picked up over a second in the last practice. We're starting to get where we need to be. We'll find out what happens after qualifying and we'll go to work on the race setup." DARRELL WALTRIP (#17 Auto Parts America Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 4th - "What a thrill! We just wanted to qualify decent. We didn't really think we'd be on the pole or anything and we won't be. There will be cars that will beat that but man....they know that we're here anyway." YOU MADE SOME CHANGES AFTER RICH BICKLE RAN. THEY MUST HAVE HELPED. - "That's just another good indication why you need two cars. Rich came in and said, 'DW, the car was this way, the track was this way.' A couple of minor changes really helped. So he's good and we are, too. I'm so pumped. This is going to be a great weekend. I can't wait. I'm just really excited!" LAKE SPEED (#9 Delta Faucet Ford Thunderbird) - Did not qualify; 32nd fastest - Crashed his primary car during Wednesday practice. Qualified a back up car. - "When you had a car running as good as we were yesterday in practice. We had really never even made a full-blown qualifying attempt at that time. To lose that car was really devastating to us. We've got a back up car and the guys are working hard trying to get it up to speed. We're not quite there yet. We'll keep working at it. This is a good race team and we'll be able to come back and have a good lap tomorrow." STEVE GRISSOM (#41 Kodiak Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 19th - "That wasn't too bad. The guys on the Kodiak team have done an awesome job and prepared a great car with super motors. The track has changed a little bit from when we were out this morning. They did a great job compensating for it. I just would have liked to have done a little bit more. But still, it's a good lap for us and from here we'll just see what happens and where we wind up. Darrell (Waltrip) and I talked just before I went out. I kinda knew what the track was like for me and for him to go out and run a good lap like he did was pretty amazing. Now Dale Jarrett's come in since and beat him. These guys are pretty awesome. It's neat to be a part of it and to be here at Indianapolis." TERRY LABONTE (#5 Kellogg's Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Did not qualify; 31st fastest - "We were a little bit loose. We made some adjustments on it but we didn't do it quite enough. I knew when I left the pits and I was loose coming off (turn) two I was going to be in trouble. It's a good car and I think it will be good in the race. We just missed it a little bit today." RON BARFIELD (#92 New Holland Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 23rd - Crashed during Thursday practice. - "This New Holland car is running good today. The last time we went out we put stickers (tires) on the car and I came up off of turn four and I just slapped the wall pretty doggone hard. We got back to the garage and just didn't have enough time to get back out there. In fact, it still has the two right side tires that I hit the wall with on it. We didn't hit it real hard, just enough to stop my momentum. But we'll take that lap. It was a good lap for us. My guys have done a heck of a job. I want to thank New Holland for coming on board with us this year. If they keep hanging with us we're going to be all right." BILL ELLIOTT (#94 McDonald's Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 15th - "We've struggled all week. Yesterday we had a motor mess up. We were going to do some qualifying runs so that kind of threw that out the window. This morning we had some other problems with a water pump and stuff. We never got a chance to go out and do what we needed to do. I knew I was better and I felt like the car was better than what I ran here today. Mike (Beam, crew chief) and I talked about it. We just wanted to get a good solid lap in and try to get in the race and then kind of work on it from there. I think everything that could go wrong has gone wrong but fortunately we have a good race car for this weekend. The McDonald's Ford will run good on Saturday." DAVID GREEN (#96 Caterpillar Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 9th - "That's about what we ran in testing here. This weekend the guys have worked their tails off. We changed the motor and changed a little bit of everything. I always look at my practice times and if I can qualify just a tick better than I practice, I'm pretty happy. So today I've got a big smile on my face. Katech does our motors and we just had a little failure earlier with an oil pump. It wasn't the engine's fault. We missed the last fifteen minutes of practice. When I got the checkered flag that was the first lap that's been on this motor. The temperature was up pretty good so I killed it and I guess I killed it at the right time to make a big bang. That was a good lap. I hope that holds up. I guess it will for the first day so I'm pretty happy about that." WALLY DALLENBACH (#46 First Union Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 14th - "We missed it a little bit. We're real disappointed with that. That's the slowest we've run since we've been here. It just seems like we've been having a little bit of trouble with the track today. We changed a few things right before qualifying. We thought it would help it. We lost a little bit of overall grip. We'll worry about Saturday. We've still got a really good race car. This race car we made a lot of long race runs on when we tested here. We should be good Saturday." RICKY RUDD (#10 Tide Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 7th - "We're happy with that. We were a little bit tight when we qualified and a little bit tight in practice. We're really happy. This is a pretty intensified moment qualifying here. I was telling those guys on the radio, 'I'm glad that's over with.' More intense than Daytona 500 qualifying. We finished sixth here the last race but we had to struggle from the back to the front. We had some mechanical problems that we were able to come back and fix. This is by far the best race car I ever had here. So hopefully this thing will run up front. This Tide Ford has been pretty fast all week." MIKE SKINNER (#31 Lowe's Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 6th - Crashed primary car during Wednesday practice. Qualified a back up car. - "I've got to take my hat off to this crew. They worked their tails off. I feel for the motor guys. They struggled on this qualifying motor and made the call to take that engine out right before qualifying. They said, 'That thing's blown up it just hasn't thrown anything out of it yet.' We cut the fenders up on the thing. We did everything humanly possible to that car to make it better. It's nowhere near the car that we had yesterday but I'm just glad it looks like we'll make the top twenty-five with that run. Now we can concentrate on the race. Richard (Childress, car owner) has a guy coming in the morning to put new fenders on it. The guys have done a great job calling pit strategy. We've struggled in the pits a little bit but the guys all want to race and they're going to get better and better and better. Hopefully I'll make us make less mistakes as we go through this second half of the year. I really hope we can do a little bit better. I've made a lot of mistakes and they've made some mistakes but this is a good race team. Richard still has a lot of confidence in us so we're going to keep on digging." ROBBY GORDON (#40 Coors Light Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 11th - "We layed the spoiler down in practice because the car was pushing a little bit. Maybe we shouldn't have done that. It got a little hot. It got a little slick. We were pretty loose in the corners. Pretty good effort for SABCO. What? Three cars in the top fifteen? The guys at the other shop are doing a pretty good job getting us some power. It's unfortunate that we qualified back 11th but Joe (Nemechek) did a good job. He's on the front row. We got a pretty good effort. That will lock us in on first day. Now we can work on race setup the rest of the weekend."